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Here's a thought for June 10

June 10, 2011
By the Rev. Mark Winther , Marshall Independent

Albright United Methodist Church

Burdens, boredom and blessings

What is life's greatest burden? Is it disease? Shattered dreams? Broken relationships? Someone else's welfare? What indeed is life's heaviest burden?

An elderly and lonely man was asked that very question. He replied sadly, "To have nothing to carry." I have a strong suspicion "having nothing to carry" might well be life's greatest burden.

Many of us complain rather quickly just how heavy are the burdens we carry. We count up quickly how many "thorns in the flesh" we are given to bear. We whimper when others load up our lives with their cares. Such burdens certainly aren't enjoyable. They don't make delightful companions for the journey of life.

Yet I suspect life is a lot less meaningful and a lot less fulfilling when we have "nothing to carry." For, you see, life without burdens is soon susceptible to boredom. And that is by far a more subtle and treacherous burden to endure.

As Frederick Buechner puts it, "To be bored is to turn down cold whatever life happens to be offering you at that moment." I'd rather be burden any day than be bored.

A bored life is devoid of anticipation. A burdened life never is. Not only that, but burdens can become blessings. Embrace the burdens others would have you share, and at least two blessings are yours. One, you are apt to be delivered yourself from any lingering source of boredom. Two, you are likely to find your own life made richer. And stronger.



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